Offshore lighthouse

Offshore Lighthouses are lighthouses that are not close to land.[1] There can be a number of reasons for these lighthouses to be built. There can be a shoal, reef or submerged island several miles from land.

The current Cordouan Lighthouse was completed in 1611 seven kilometers from the shore on a small islet, but was built on a previous lighthouse that can be traced back to 880 and is the oldest surviving lighthouse in France. It is connected to the mainland by a causeway.

The oldest surviving oceanic offshore lighthouse is Bell Rock Lighthouse in the North Sea, off the coast of Scotland.[2]

United States

The Stratford Shoals, Middle Ground lighthouse in Long Island Sound is about 6 miles from land. There are many examples of such lighthouses throughout the world. Many are considered to be stag lighthouses.

There are two lighthouses in the German Bight on the northern coast of Germany which have been built offshore on sand:

  1. Roter Sand
  2. Alte Weser

Most caisson lighthouses are offshore lighthouses.


  1. "Lighthouse Terminology Part 2", Sea Girt Lighthouse, retrieved 2013-02-15, A lighthouse located offshore, built on a foundation of pilings, rocks or caissons.
  2. Cadbury, Deborah (2012), Seven Wonders of the Industrial World (Text only ed.), HarperCollins UK, p. 106, ISBN 0007388926.

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